LIBERTY COUNTY, Texas – A $1 million bond was set for a man accused of dragging another man by a truck and then burning the vehicle in Liberty County, according to the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office.
Robert Eugene Hoffpauir, 37, was arrested Sunday and charged with abuse of a corpse and murder for the death of 60-year-old Roman Rodriguez, of Rye, Texas. Hoffpauir’s mother, Timey Ann Cole, was arrested Wednesday and charged with tampering with physical evidence and abuse of a corpse.
Investigators said Rodriguez arrived at Hoffpauir’s mother’s home and a fight broke out between the men due to a former relationship between Rodriguez and Cole. Investigators said during the fight, Hoffpauir severely beat Rodriguez and then tied a tow strap around his waist.
Hoffpauir allegedly then tied the other end of the tow strap to a pick-up truck that belonged to Rodriguez and then used the truck to drag him from the home for a lengthy distance down the road.
“It is unusual and it’s a situation that got totally out of control,” said Capt. Ken DeFoor.
Investigators said Hoffpauir abandoned the truck on CR 2741 just north of Rye, Texas in the eastern part of the county and then set the truck on fire. Investigators said Rodriguez’s body was found on the ground behind the truck. According to investigators, they are waiting on an autopsy to determine if he died before or after the dragging.
“It’s got everybody distraught around here,” said neighbor Chuck Barnes. “It’s got everybody distraught and very upset.”
Hoffpauir was placed into the Liberty County Jail where his bond was set at $1 million.